Sleep For Weight Loss: Are They Connected?

A lot of people think that the most important parts of weight loss are working out and having a balanced diet. But that’s far from the truth.

woman sleeping in bed

There are so many major factors of weight loss. One very important one is sleep. I know, this must sound silly. How can laying down and doing literally nothing possibly help you lose weight? It sounded funny to me, too.

A few years ago my sleeping schedule was all over the place. I’d sleep maybe 5 hours a night which is far from enough and then I’d take naps during the day and just feel exhausted. But I never thought it was a big deal. And many people don’t think it’s that important. But trust me, it is. Especially if you’re losing weight. Now I know just how important sleep is. And after you read this article so will you!

Benefits Of Sleep For Weight Loss:

1.Enough sleep helps keep balanced energy levels

Obviously, the better you sleep, the more energy you will have. And the more energy you have, the better your workout will be and the more calories you will burn! Good, energy-filled workouts are crucial if you want to successfully and quickly lose weight. If you don’t sleep enough, you won’t be able to focus not only on your workout but on different everyday activities, which can definitely hinder your weight loss journey.

But if you have enough energy, you will feel happier, more motivated throughout the day. And this is very important for a successful workout and for staying active doing other everyday activities. And you won’t want to lay around and take naps, which is also great.

2.Sleeping enough helps you stay motivated to stick to your weight loss program  

According to this study, those who sleep less than 6 hours or over 8 hours a night are less likely to stick to their weight loss programs than those who sleep 6-8 hours a night.

We all know that motivation is key when it comes to weight loss. And as a matter of fact, sleep deprivation or oversleeping can seriously hinder your motivation. When you don’t sleep enough, you feel stressed and tired and are unable to focus. Of course, this messes with your emotional stability and motivation towards your weight loss program. You will also likely give in to all those nasty cravings easier, which we know is the killer of all diets!

But if you sleep enough, your emotions and thoughts will be balanced and you will most likely maintain and build your motivation, stick to your goal and continue following your weight loss program. So being emotionally stable really is an essential part of your weight loss journey.

3.Sleep helps keep your metabolism stable

A study has shown that people who don’t sleep enough have a decreased metabolic rate. But those who sleep enough maintain a stable metabolism. And this is extremely important for weight loss because a healthy metabolism means you burn calories faster, which means you lose fat faster. Whereas a decreased metabolism means you burn calories much slower. So if your weight loss isn’t going well, this could certainly be the reason!

So as you can see, sleep really is an important factor of losing weight. But in this busy world we live in it could be very difficult to maintain a consistent sleeping schedule.

How To Get A Good Night’s Sleep Every Night:

1.Get a sleep tracker

A sleep tracker monitors how you sleep. I recommend the Xiaomi Mi Band 2. It shows you how long you slept and according to your heartbeat, it shows you your deep sleep and light sleep hours. And it gives you suggestions on your sleeping plan based on the data collected.

2.Try to have a consistent bedtime and wake up time on all days of the week.

This will prevent you from going to bed at 2 am, which usually results in sleep deprivation. And waking up at the same time will keep you from oversleeping. At first, this may be hard but with time you will get used to your sleeping schedule and your body will automatically get tired when it’s bedtime and you will be able to wake up without an alarm at the same time every morning!

3.Avoid long naps

Having a short 30-minute nap in the afternoon is completely fine. But sleeping for up to 3 hours in the middle of the day can seriously hinder your night’s sleep. You will probably have trouble falling asleep at night and end up exhausted the next day, which will result in another 3-hour nap.

So try setting an alarm when you take naps or if that still doesn’t work, try avoiding naps generally and go to bed sooner!

4.Exercise

Exercising is very important when maintaining a sleeping schedule. Based on a study, people who were more active during the day fell asleep much easier than those who didn’t exercise. This is due to the fact that physical activity heats your body up and it is much easier to fall asleep after your workout when your body temperature drops. So, make sure you’re being active, and hit the gym or go for a walk!

So if you’ve been exercising and following a strict diet in order to lose weight but it doesn’t seem to work, you might want to try improving your sleeping schedule. But not only will you get a good night’s sleep and have a lot of energy in the morning, you will also burn a few hundred calories! Studies show that an average person burns about 500 calories a night!